Dating Pattern?

Postby noknow » Tue Jul 24, 2018 5:59 am

I've been pondering lately now that I'm back to being single. I've notice that EVERY relationship I've been in, that the girl I dated has come from a broken family. I'm talking that she's been abused mentally/physically, parents are divorced, and there is a poor/non-existent/hatefilled relationship with parents or siblings. I'm just wondering two things:

1) How these types of things impact a person down the road, especially when it comes to forming relationships?

2) Why have I been doing this? I've had 3 serious relationships, and 6 or so dates that were shorter term. But I've seen this with all girls except one. I can't think of any conscious reasons, what are some subconscious reasons? Note that my parents got divorced when I was young, but my mum remarried. Not sure if that could play into it.
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#1

Postby Candid » Tue Jul 24, 2018 7:58 am

noknow wrote:I've notice that EVERY relationship I've been in, that the girl I dated has come from a broken family. I'm talking that she's been abused mentally/physically, parents are divorced, and there is a poor/non-existent/hatefilled relationship with parents or siblings.


This is partly because there's so much of it about. Fifty years ago most people didn't get divorced or leave each other, and virtually no one was talking about physical or sexual abuse, much less the mental/emotional kind. You stuck with your partner no matter what, and if Dad was beating you with a stick several times a week, no one was coming to your aid. Family was sacrosanct, nobody else's business.

Now if two people don't get on they can just walk away, and whoever gets the kids also gets financial support. Our definition of abuse has been broadened so much as to blur the line between discipline and violence.

1) How these types of things impact a person down the road, especially when it comes to forming relationships?


We have throwaway relationships. At the first sign of trouble we know we can bail out, and for this reason people are comfortable declaring themselves "in a relationship" much more quickly than they formerly would have done. If society still had the expectation that after a few months 'courting' you would stay together for life, you wouldn't be writing about "EVERY relationship I've been in". It would be shameful to admit to so many failures.

Something I see more and more on this forum is EITHER people are way too quick to declare themselves in exclusive relationships, with all the possessiveness, control and sexual jealousy that goes with it; OR they have isolated themselves completely and choose online relationships over spending time with the people around them.

2) Why have I been doing this? I've had 3 serious relationships, and 6 or so dates that were shorter term. But I've seen this with all girls except one. I can't think of any conscious reasons, what are some subconscious reasons?


If everyone you're attracted to has a psychological problem, I would suspect a lack of confidence or poor self-esteem. Psychologically uncomplicated girls are for 'better', more competitive guys. No 'normal' girl could be interested in someone like you. She's messed-up? GREAT! The better guys won't give her the time of day, so she's vulnerable. It's a great way to shore up your self-esteem, because you're 'helping' her. As a bonus, surely she can't leave you? That would be base ingratitude.

The fact that it hasn't worked in (so far) three "serious" relationships shows a) how eager you are for "serious"; and b) how tightly you cling to ideas that don't work for you.

Note that my parents got divorced when I was young, but my mum remarried. Not sure if that could play into it.


You've mentioned it, so it probably does. At your current age you can make it tidy in your mind, but when you were young it wasn't so simple. Depending on how young you were, you might have thought their separation was your fault, that you were a bad boy, or that one or both of them didn't love you enough to stick around.

Seeing as the last two break-ups have been so hard for you, I suggest you work on your self-esteem and hold back from "serious" relationships until you feel more confident. Dating is good practice. "Serious" relationships are the ones we should be able to count on lasting for ever.
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#2

Postby noknow » Sun Jul 29, 2018 2:41 am

Candid wrote:
noknow wrote:I've notice that EVERY relationship I've been in, that the girl I dated has come from a broken family. I'm talking that she's been abused mentally/physically, parents are divorced, and there is a poor/non-existent/hatefilled relationship with parents or siblings.


This is partly because there's so much of it about. Fifty years ago most people didn't get divorced or leave each other, and virtually no one was talking about physical or sexual abuse, much less the mental/emotional kind. You stuck with your partner no matter what, and if Dad was beating you with a stick several times a week, no one was coming to your aid. Family was sacrosanct, nobody else's business.

Now if two people don't get on they can just walk away, and whoever gets the kids also gets financial support. Our definition of abuse has been broadened so much as to blur the line between discipline and violence.

1) How these types of things impact a person down the road, especially when it comes to forming relationships?


We have throwaway relationships. At the first sign of trouble we know we can bail out, and for this reason people are comfortable declaring themselves "in a relationship" much more quickly than they formerly would have done. If society still had the expectation that after a few months 'courting' you would stay together for life, you wouldn't be writing about "EVERY relationship I've been in". It would be shameful to admit to so many failures.

Something I see more and more on this forum is EITHER people are way too quick to declare themselves in exclusive relationships, with all the possessiveness, control and sexual jealousy that goes with it; OR they have isolated themselves completely and choose online relationships over spending time with the people around them.

2) Why have I been doing this? I've had 3 serious relationships, and 6 or so dates that were shorter term. But I've seen this with all girls except one. I can't think of any conscious reasons, what are some subconscious reasons?


If everyone you're attracted to has a psychological problem, I would suspect a lack of confidence or poor self-esteem. Psychologically uncomplicated girls are for 'better', more competitive guys. No 'normal' girl could be interested in someone like you. She's messed-up? GREAT! The better guys won't give her the time of day, so she's vulnerable. It's a great way to shore up your self-esteem, because you're 'helping' her. As a bonus, surely she can't leave you? That would be base ingratitude.

The fact that it hasn't worked in (so far) three "serious" relationships shows a) how eager you are for "serious"; and b) how tightly you cling to ideas that don't work for you.

Note that my parents got divorced when I was young, but my mum remarried. Not sure if that could play into it.


You've mentioned it, so it probably does. At your current age you can make it tidy in your mind, but when you were young it wasn't so simple. Depending on how young you were, you might have thought their separation was your fault, that you were a bad boy, or that one or both of them didn't love you enough to stick around.

Seeing as the last two break-ups have been so hard for you, I suggest you work on your self-esteem and hold back from "serious" relationships until you feel more confident. Dating is good practice. "Serious" relationships are the ones we should be able to count on lasting for ever.


I really do like the concept of a partner sticking with you through thick and thin. Except in the case there is abuse.

I do admit to low self esteem. At 30 I thought I would have this figured out by now. But I will be starting therapy soon. I still don't feel complete as a person. I'm still trying to find my value and principles that I believe in. Basically...I'm uncertain with who I am, I don't know how to solve it and I don't know if I ever will. I find myself asking "what do I believe in?", "What special things do I have to offer?", "Why am I here?", "What makes a good person?" "How should I live my life?".

My parents separated when I was 6. My my mother remarried when I was 8, so I did have a father figure throughout the rest of my life, even though we didn't get along, until now...
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#3

Postby Candid » Sun Jul 29, 2018 4:51 pm

noknow wrote:I really do like the concept of a partner sticking with you through thick and thin.


Me too. Thing is, if that's what you want you need to be a whole lot pickier in your choice of "serious" partners.

I do admit to low self esteem.


This is the reason you attract and are attracted to women with emotional problems. (And assuming you're choosing age-appropriate females, they are women -- not girls.) I'm glad you've organised therapy. You'll be better placed afterwards to choose partners who aren't too messed-up to be in a healthy relationship. Your parents' separation when you were so young is almost certainly a factor and ought to come up in therapy.

I'm still trying to find my value and principles that I believe in. Basically...I'm uncertain with who I am, I don't know how to solve it and I don't know if I ever will. I find myself asking "what do I believe in?", "What special things do I have to offer?", "Why am I here?", "What makes a good person?" "How should I live my life?"


It was Oscar Wilde who wrote: "I am the only person in the world I should like to know thoroughly", so you're in good company. This type of question recurs throughout life among thoughtful people, and the answers change over time. Merely asking those questions, and accepting that there may be no right answers, is a great step towards maturity and self-knowledge.
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